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Novak Djokovic vs Rafael Nadal French Open Odds, Preview, Prediction (May 31)

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Djokovic v Nadal Odds

Djokovic’s odds -223
Nadal’s odds +175
Total 29.5 (-115 / -105)
Time 2:45 p.m. ET
Odds via PointsBet. For tips on watching tennis matches, click here.

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal will meet on clay at Roland-Garros for the second consecutive year.

After the Serb took him out in a controversial semi-final in 2021, he will look to reach that stage again with a win over the Spaniard in the quarters.

We’ve seen these two play so many times, so what sets this encounter apart? How do we bet it? Let’s take a closer look at the game.

Djokovic comfortable at Roland Garros

Novak Djokovic hasn’t been bothered here at Roland Garros so far.

He is yet to drop a set despite tough competition, including beating Diego Schwartzman in the fourth round.

Despite the fact that Schwartzman took five sets from Djokovic at the 2017 French Open and still played him close on clay, the world No. 1 was all busy on Sunday morning. He only lost seven games during the proceedings.

Djokovic served 69% in the match and won 74% of the points behind his first serve, both very impressive numbers against a world-class returner like Schwartzman.

These two have met 58 times across all competitions, with Djokovic holding a slight 30-28 advantage over the Spaniard.

Nadal does have a decisive 17-8 advantage on clay, however, and he has ousted Djokovic at Roland Garros eight times if you count their very first encounter in 2008, which ended in Djokovic’s retirement.

There is something to be said here, however, about the fact that Djokovic is one of only two people to beat Nadal at Roland Garros.

The Spaniard has lost just three matches here – one against Djokovic last year in the semi-finals and the other in the 2015 quarter-finals, when Djokovic won in straight sets.

Nadal limited by injury problems

Now you know the story. If you didn’t, I just gave it to you.

Nadal simply doesn’t lose on clay at Roland Garros, and he’s been to nearly every French Open as a deserving favorite.

This year is a little different, however. Nadal suffered a rib injury that contributed to a loss to Taylor Fritz in the Indian Wells final, and he later injured his foot in Rome in a three-set loss to Denis Shapovalov.

Injury concerns, coupled with Nadal’s foot giving him problems in the past – notably against Djokovic last year – prompted bettors to make a dramatic move and reinstall Nadal as the third most likely to win the tournament before it begins.

Everything seemed to be going smoothly until Sunday when youngster Felix Auger-Aliassime pushed Nadal to a fifth set and made the Spaniard work incredibly hard for a victory.

Although the foot held off Nadal, who moved quite well on the court, there seems to be a limit to the amount of tennis he can play before he acts again.

bet value

Boy, it’s hard.

On the one hand, you never want to make Nadal disappear at Roland Garros, given that the man played here for nearly two decades and only lost three times.

On the other hand, Father Time is coming for all of us, and the signs coming from Nadal leading into this tournament just weren’t great.

Nadal made an inordinate number of unforced errors in his match against Auger-Aliassime, looking terrible to start and looking shaky again in the fourth set. Although he eventually managed to get out of trouble with a timely break, Djokovic is unlikely to be as forgiving as Auger-Aliassime.

After all, he’s arguably the best player ever to pull mistakes from your racquet, or just the best player ever.

Djokovic deserves to be the favorite here, and while I’d love to take this rare opportunity to back Nadal as an underdog, I don’t see him winning this game or even pushing five.

I think there are serious physical concerns, and even if he is able to take one of the first two sets, he should fade.

A fresh Djokovic, in top form and fresher than ever, should survive the 13-time French Open champion.

Choice: Djokovic -1.5 sets (-115)